The Saluki, also called the Gazelle Hound and the Persian Greyhounds, is an ancient Persian breed. It belongs to the hound group and it was originally used as a hunting dog and sight hound. This running dog stands between 22 and 28 inches tall and usually weighs between 44 and 66 pounds. They have a build similar to that of the Greyhound, however, they have feathering on their ears, tails, and on the backs of their legs. They come in a variety of colors including fawn, red, silver, tri-color, white, and cream.
They are not always easy to train and require a lot of patience and understanding. They may not compete in obedience competitions very often but they can make a great family companion with proper training.
The Saluki, is an ancient sight hound breed, they are primarily used in hunting fast game animals. They also have a history in the Islamic culture.
Salukis look fragile but their hunting prowess is just as good as any hunting breed. As companions, they are docile and well-mannered.
Origin of the Saluki
The Saluki is a very ancient breed of dog. The name “Saluki” was taken from the then existing Arabian city of the same name. Muslims held them in a very high esteem; considering them a sacred gift from God. Considered to be animals with religious implications, Salukis are often found mummified along with pharaohs. Saluki pictures appear in ancient Egyptian tombs dating from 2100 BC.
They were used as hunters of gazelles and antelopes. They have also been used to hunt fox, jackal, and hare. Nowadays, they are usually companion pets and conformation show dogs and they are sometimes used in racing.
The Saluki Appearance and Abilities
Salukis are graceful looking dogs. Their sleek appearance depict speed and agility. When at top speed, you will often see their four legs are in the air at the same time. The Salukis’ gait is unique and powerful
Salukis have smooth and soft coats that are silky to the touch. Slight feathering on the legs is present and also at the back of the thighs. Coat colors can be black & tan, fawn, white, cream, gold and red, as well as various combinations of these. There is also a smooth-coated variety which has a coarser coat and with the absence of feathering.
Salukis are hunters by trade. They have amazing endurance and their instinct to hunt is great. Salukis will chase game over long distances with tremendous perseverance. Terrain and distance is never an issue for Salukis.
Temperament and Tendencies of the Saluki
Salukis are even-tempered dogs. They are gentle and affectionate but may seem aloof and reserved. They are naturally quiet and won’t bark unless necessary. They tend to howl in a high-pitched tone if they feel that something is wrong or if they want attention.
Loyal and very devoted, Salukis sometimes become attached to one person in the family. They will always want companionship from their masters, wanting always to be near them.
Salukis can get along well with children; they are patient and gentle with them. If they need peace and quite, they will find an area for themselves to settle. They also get along with other canines especially with other Salukis.
Salukis are fairly inactive indoors but when on the field they are bursting with bottomless energy. They can be protective but they are usually on the aloof side even with their family.
Saluki Training and Care
The Saluki is an intelligent dog but they can easily get bored with repetitive training. Training sessions should be kept short but frequent. Salukis are sensitive dogs. They should never be subjected to harsh methods of training. Owners must establish themselves as pack leaders so the dogs feel secure with their surroundings.
Salukis should be exercised regularly. A lack of exercise may make them restless indoors and can lead to destructive behaviors. They may need obedience training to keep their deep-rooted hunting instincts under control, however with few exceptions it has proven impossible to train these dogs not to hunt at all.